Roses are beautiful, iconic flowers famed for their fabulous fragrance. However, this intoxicating scent can attract unwanted attention from furry friends such as cats. It’s important to know whether roses are safe for cats. In this article, I’ll run through everything you need to know about whether roses are toxic to cats or not.
Are Roses Toxic to Cats?
The ASPCA (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) lists roses as non-toxic to cats. As such, roses shouldn’t be fatal to cats in most circumstances. However, roses can still cause cats discomfort and minor injury if ingested or brushed against.
What Effects Do Roses Have On Cats?
Although roses aren’t toxic to cats, they may still cause minor injury or problems. When cats ingest rose leaves or flowers, they may experience some minor stomach discomfort. This can result in vomiting or diarrhea, although the symptoms should only last for a few hours. If your cat continues to experience vomiting or diarrhea for more extended periods, the issue may be more serious.
The most dangerous parts of roses for cats are the thorny stems. When cats brush against rose bushes, they may get pricked or cut by the thorns. And if your cat ingests a piece of stem, the thorns may cause internal damage.
What to Do if Your Cat Consumes a Rose
If your cat consumes part of a rose bush, monitor them closely for several hours. Normally, your cat may experience some vomiting or diarrhea if it has eaten some of the leaves or flowers. However, if your cat has ingested some of the thorns, it could lead to more serious problems.
If your cat experiences gastronomic difficulties for several hours after eating the rose, ring your veterinarian. You should also call the vet if your cat experiences excessive drooling, panting, seizures, or tremors.
Rose thorns can also injure your cats by cutting or pricking them. If your cat has been in contact with a rose bush, check them over for injuries. If you find any cuts, treat them with some antibiotic ointment.
How to Keep Your Cats Away From Roses
You can keep your cat and your roses safe from each other in a few ways. The easiest way is to use physical barriers to protect your cat from your roses. Ideally, this should be a cage or something that fully encloses your roses so your cat can’t climb the barrier.
You could also cut off your rose’s thorns to prevent your cat from being injured. However, this may leave your roses more vulnerable to other animals that might eat them.
Another way to separate your roses and cat is to use companion plants to repel or distract your cat. Plants like marigolds produce unpleasant scents that cats don’t like. Alternatively, plants like catnip can distract your cat from your roses.
Roses are deciduous perennial shrubs or vines from the Rosaceae family. Most roses are native to Asia, although a few species are native to Europe, North Africa, and North America. Horticulturalists around the world have also bred thousands of rose cultivars.
Roses are broadly divided into three main groups; old garden roses, species roses, and modern or hybrid roses. Within these groups, roses are also subdivided into various types, such as thornless climbing roses, Floribunda roses, and miniature roses.
These beautiful deciduous perennials have large single, double, or semi-double flowers with five petals. Many rose cultivars also produce wonderful musky or heady fragrances. Roses also have pinnate leaves with toothed edges and woody stems covered in sharp thorns. What’s more, roses are rich in symbolic value and cover a variety of beautiful colors.
Are Roses Toxic to Cats FAQs:
What Happens If My Cat Eats My Roses?
If your cat eats your roses, it may experience some minor gastronomic issues such as diarrhea or vomiting. Usually, these symptoms should only last for a couple of hours.
Do Cats Dislike Roses?
Cats are attracted to roses because these flowers produce strong scents. As such, curious cats will often sniff roses to investigate.
How Do I Keep Cats Away From My Roses?
Keep cats away from your roses by using physical barriers or companion plants like marigolds or catnip.
The ASPCA lists roses as non-toxic to cats. However, cats can experience some minor gastronomic issues like diarrhea or vomiting if they eat rose leaves or flowers. Cats may also be injured by rose thorns, especially if they ingest them accidentally. Keep cats away from your roses by using physical barriers or companion plants.
For more, see our in-depth guide on whether roses will bloom all summer, whether roses will bloom indoors, and popular flowers that are toxic to cats, dogs, and other pets.
Edd is a budding content writer and gardener living in the United Kingdom. He has a bachelor's degree in Creative and Professional Writing and has written for several gardening publications online. He is passionate about nature and sustainability with a focus on gardening and wildlife.